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The Valley Line: Of jewelry and the voices of children

April 04, 2012|By Jane Napier Neely
  • La Canada Flintridge resident Vicki McCluggage, from left, chats with jewelry designer Hutton Wilkinson at a boutique jewelry show held at Susanne Hollis Antiques in Pasadena. Joining them for the photo is LCF resident Karen Barsamian.
La Canada Flintridge resident Vicki McCluggage, from… (Photo by Jane Napier…)

Surprise! Fancy meeting you here today on this fine Sunday morning. This is quite a departure since I've been meeting you in this column for so many years every Thursday.

Get comfy, settle in with a cup of coffee — tea, if you prefer — and let's toast this new edition of the La Cañada Valley Sun and the Valley Line in its Sunday inauguration. Cheers!

As always, keeping tabs on the social doings of our community has always been the focus here, and sometimes it gets very busy because our folks, upon occasion, need roller skates to keep up with the social whirl that is going on.

Hutton Wilkinson, the flamboyant, globally recognized interior and jewelry designer, was the center of attention when he drew quite a crowd at the Susanne Hollis Antique shop in Pasadena. Also greeting guests was Boyd Smith, who is a devoted supporter of the Gamble House, a benefactor of the evening.

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Hutton, who was first mentored by and later became a design partner with the late designer Tony Duquette, has forged his own style in the realm of design.

Not only did Wilkinson dazzle his guests with his fabulously designed jewelry, but he charmed them with tales of spectacular one-of-a-kind pieces he and Duquette designed for iconic socialites, their parties and over-the-top lifestyles. He is an amazing raconteur with such wit and humor that you don't want him to stop doling out his tidbits.

That night Wilkinson also presented his gorgeous new book, “Tony Duquette/Hutton Wilkinson Jewelry.” The book is an art piece in itself, with full color plates and gilt-edged pages with a green satin ribbon to mark your place. A percentage of the book sales went to the Gamble House.

It was delightful to share the evening with fellow La Cañadans Vicki McCluggage, Marijane Hebert and Karen Barsamian.


On to another well attended event by La Cañadans: The Los Angeles Children's Chorus held its annual benefit, “Gala Bel Canto,” in the Eva and Marc Stern grand hall at the Dorothy Chandler Pavilion.

The chorus has had hundreds of LCF youngsters in its ranks over the years, and it is again well populated with our youth. Many of the kids who are in the concert choir are looking forward to a South African adventure when the chorus goes there to perform this summer.

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